Relative age dating rocks
An example of this type of aging includes rocks in Canada that scientists identified as being hundreds of million years old.
Absolute age is more straight-forward and does not require any other objects for comparison.
Principle of cross-cutting relations: Any geologic feature is younger than anything else that it cuts across.
Some elements have forms (called isotopes) with unstable atomic nuclei that have a tendency to change, or decay.
Where the amounts of parent and daughter isotopes can be accurately measured, the ratio can be used to determine how old the rock is, as shown in the following activities.
Part 2a Activity At any moment there is a small chance that each of the nuclei of U-235 will suddenly decay.
This activity on determining age of rocks and fossils is intended for 8th or 9th grade students.
It is estimated to require four hours of class time, including approximately one hour total of occasional instruction and explanation from the teacher and two hours of group (team) and individual activities by the students, plus one hour of discussion among students within the working groups.